Posted: Tue 5th Jul 2022

Flintshire wants to be first council in Wales to offer free data for people facing ‘digital poverty’

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Jul 5th, 2022

Flintshire Council wants to be the first local authority in Wales to offer free data to people facing “digital poverty” as the cost of living crisis bites harder.

As part of its ‘refreshed’ Digital Strategy – which will be discussed during a Corporate Resources Committee today, Tuesday, July 5 – the council is focusing heavily on ensuring people who cannot access online services are not excluded.

The internet has become such a central part of life, what was once seen as a luxury is now an essential utility.

According to the Digital Poverty Alliance: “You’re far less likely to have access to the online world if you’re living on a low income.”

“In fact, the lower your income the less likely it is.”

“That means – increasingly so – not having access to the fundamentals of life.”

“From social security, to healthcare, education and training, to finding work and applying for jobs – critical services are more and more online.”

Digital Poverty Alliance said: “Digital inclusion is no longer something that’s ‘nice to have’ – it’s an essential.”

“And being cut off from digital isn’t just an inconvenience – it compounds and exacerbates poverty. That’s no longer something we can ignore if we’re interested in a just society.”

To address digital poverty, Flintshire Council’s Connects Centres will also become “Online Centres” dedicated to supporting local communities including access to a National Data Bank.

The council will work in partnership with the Good Things Foundation which has created ‘The National Databank to provide free data to 500,000 people in need in the UK.

The databank – which is like a foodbank, but with data – is open to all mobile operators to contribute and provides free data for community groups to distribute across the UK, including the most digitally deprived areas.

In a report to be presented to Flintshire Council’s Corporate Resources Committee, Chief Officer for Governance, Gareth Owens says:

“Digital Inclusion is a new wrap-around theme within the (Flintshire Council) revised strategy and continues to be a primary consideration for all projects moving forwards, putting customers at the heart of service delivery.”

“The Council’s Digital Hub provides access to a wide range of resources including free training, access to devices and signposting to our Connects Centres, Libraries and other community initiatives.”

Mr Owens said: “This programme of support will be further enhanced during this year to include dedicated volunteers trained to support people to engage in a digital world, complemented by digital surgeries within our Connects Centres.”

“To address digital poverty, our Connects Centres will also become “Online Centres” dedicated to supporting local communities including access to a national data bank. ”

“Flintshire is aiming to be the first Council in Wales to provide free data sims to people facing digital poverty in partnership with the Good Things Foundation.” Mr Owens

 

Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: [email protected]
Latest News

  • Flintshire glamping site proposal could be approved despite road safety concerns
  • Plans to convert the Tavern in Alltami into apartments look set for green light
  • North Flintshire Police seek witnesses following ‘large public disorder’ incident in Shotton

  • More...

    Flintshire glamping site proposal could be approved despite road safety concerns

    News

    Plans to convert the Tavern in Alltami into apartments look set for green light

    News

    North Flintshire Police seek witnesses following ‘large public disorder’ incident in Shotton

    News

    Children’s hospices urge Welsh Government to provide ‘sustainable’ funding

    News

    “Bigger and better” celebration of motors and music returning to Wrexham

    News

    Plans for traveller site in Flintshire village recommended for approval despite land contamination concerns

    News

    Police alert residents to cold callers operating in two parts of Flintshire

    News

    Planning: Greggs wants to open a new store in Queensferry

    News

    North Flintshire Police round up: Public order incident in Shotton leads to 2 arrests

    News